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He has taken away my disgrace

2009 November 26
by Tim V-B

I’ve been studying Luke 1:1-25 in preparation for a sermon on Sunday evening. I think that Elizabeth’s words are a pattern for all followers of Jesus.
“The LORD has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favour and taken away my disgrace among the people.”

What does this mean?

Many many Christians experience disgrace. Around many countries, if someone converts to Christianity they bring shame on their family. It is a disgrace. Christians are often overlooked, ignored, sidelined. In one area of India it might be that they are not allowed to buy food from the village shop. In the workplace in this country it might mean a follower of Jesus is the butt of jokes, is overlooked for promotion. Around the world it is common to find Christianity spreading among those who are low, the disgraced. In the Untouchables caste in India. Or the slums of Brazil.

You might have experienced disgrace in your life, or you feel a deep shame for something in the past. Something you have rarely, or never spoken about, yet it haunts you and the thought of others knowing terrifies you.

To you, to me, to Christians around the world – Jesus says a day is coming, a day of his favour, when he will take away our disgrace. All our guilt, shame, isolation – will vanish.

Imagine a Christian from the untouchables caste in India. Her whole life others look down on her; she is given menial jobs that no one else wants. Her health is poor, her appearance not worth mentioning. No on in government is interested in her. No big name in society is interested in her, they barely notice as they drive past in their chauffeur driven car. But she knows Jesus. Her story has been grafted into the Great Story.

A day is coming when all her disgrace will be taken away. Her body will be resurrected. She will shine with the glorious Spirit filling her completely. If people could see NOW what she will be THEN, they would fall down and worship her. The important, the rich, the powerful – Jesus will say to them, “You are nothing. You have nothing. Depart from me you wicked people.” But to her, Jesus will say, “Welcome home. Great to see. Well done, good and faithful servant.”

A day is coming when God’s people will shine with the very radiance of God. When the humble believer will be exalted to the right hand of the Father, seated with Jesus on the Throne of Majesty. If your life has been grafted onto Jesus’ life, then his glorious victory and power will one day be your glorious victory and power. As Mary will say, later in chapter 1, “He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but sent the rich away empty.”

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  1. November 26, 2009


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